Safer Products

We are working toward Safer California households, workplaces and products

Information for Manufacturers of Packaging or Packaging Components

As a manufacturer or supplier of packaging and/or packaging components, you have the ultimate responsibility to ensure that your packaging conforms to the law regarding the limits of cadmium, lead, mercury, and hexavalent chromium allowed.
This law prohibits:

  • The intentional introduction of cadmium, lead, mercury, or hexavalent chromium, and/or;
  • The incidental presence of those metals above 100 parts per million (ppm) by weight. This is a combined weight of all of the above metals, not individually.

What does this mean for you, the manufacturer? This law is not limited to just California manufacturers or suppliers. If your packaging or packaging component is sold or promoted in California, even indirectly, your product cannot contain these metals if intentionally introduced into the packaging, and cannot have an amount greater than 100 ppm if incidentally introduced.

Certificate of Compliance

As a manufacturer or supplier, you must provide a Certificate of Compliance to purchasers of your packaging. Click here to view a sample Certificate of Compliance. This sample is not meant to be turned in to us in this form. Please remember to change the text to include your company name and address on the Certificate of Compliance, and have an authorized person from your company sign the Certificate of Compliance.

We may request copies of your Certificate(s) of Compliance from you. If we request them, you must provide them to us within the timeframe in the request.

It is encumbent upon you, as the manufacturer or supplier of packaging, to ensure that your packaging complies with the Toxics in Packaging Prevention Act. Documentation that your packaging is within the limits of the law, through laboratory analysis, is needed. Your Certificate of Compliance is a self-certification that your company is compliant with the law.

A guidance document, Guidance on Laboratory Analysis for Toxics in Packaging, has been created by the Toxics In Packaging Clearinghouse, which contains helpful information on laboratory analysis of packaging.


Are there exemptions to the Toxics in Packaging Prevention Act?

Yes, there are exemptions to the law. But they are specific.

The following packaging is permanently exempt from the law:

  1. Packaging marked with a code indicating a date of manufacture prior to January 1, 2006 (Health & Saf. Code, §25214.14(a)).
  2. Packaging with metals added to meet federal and state health and safety requirements (Health & Saf. Code, §25214(b)).
  3. Packaging with a regulated metal for which there is currently no feasible alternative ingredient to use (Health & Saf. Code 25214(d)).

The following exemptions have now expired (January 1, 2010) and MAY NO LONGER BE CLAIMED:

  1. Packaging that contains no intentionally introduced regulated metals but exceeds the concentration limit solely because of adding a recycled material (Health & Saf. Code 25214(c)).
  2. Packaging that is reused and contains no intentionally introduced regulated metals but exceeds the applicable maximum concentration levels and the product is otherwise regulated (Health & Saf. Code 25214(e)).
  3. Packaging that has a controlled distribution and reuse and contains no intentionally introduced regulated metals but exceeds the applicable maximum concentration levels (Health & Saf. Code 25214(f)).
  4. Packaging that is a glass or ceramic package with a vitrified label (one that is applied with intense heat into or onto the package) (Health & Saf. Code 25214(g)). The packaging cannot exceed 1.0 ppm for cadmium, 5.0 ppm for hexavalent chromium, and 5.0 ppm for lead when tested using California’s hazardous waste testing procedures. Glass or ceramic packaging containing mercury is not eligible for this exemption.

Please review the following Fact Sheet for more information on these requirements.

Also, the actual law can be read here: Toxics in Packaging Prevention Act

NOTE: If an exemption is claimed for any packaging or packaging component, then a copy of the Certificate of Compliance showing the basis for the exemption MUST be sent to DTSC, as well as to your purchasers. The address to send the Certificate of Compliance is:

Department of Toxic Substances Control
Attention: Matt McCarron
700 Heinz Avenue, Suite 210
Berkeley, CA  94710